GREEN CITY, CLEAN WATERS PROGRAM: City + University Partnership Pioneers Application of Real-Time Data to Help Philadelphia Improve Green Design for Rainwater Capture

Note to Reader:

In a major initiative, Philadelphia is building an extensive network of rain gardens, green roofs, wetlands, and other infrastructure to capture rainwater and stormwater runoff. The goal is to prevent runoff from overwhelming sewers and polluting waterways and to help green America’s fifth-largest city.

In six years, the Philadelphia Water Department, collaborating with environmental groups and civic associations, has completed 152 publicly funded green stormwater infrastructure projects. Some 300 more are in the works in schools, parking lots, parks, and on rooftops.

Real-Time Data Helps Philadelphia Improve Green Design

MetroLab Network has partnered with Government Technology to bring its readers a segment called the MetroLab Innovation of the Month Series, which highlights impactful tech, data, and innovation projects underway between cities and universities.

The focus of the December 2018 installment of the Innovation of the Month Series was on how the city of Philadelphia has partnered with Drexel University to develop the Green Infrastructure Living Laboratory, a collaborative effort focused on collecting real-time data on green infrastructure systems to improve future designs.

MetroLab’s Executive Director Ben Levine spoke with Dr. Ziwen Yu, Babak K. Roodsari and Karly Soldner, researchers at Drexel University’s Sustainable Water Resource Engineering Lab, as well as Stephen White and Matthew Fritch, engineers at the Philadelphia Water Department.

To Learn More:

To read the complete interview, download a PDF copy of Real-Time Data Helps Philadelphia Improve Green Design

Ben Levine is the executive director of MetroLab Network. Previously he was a policy adviser at the U.S. Department of the Treasury, where he was responsible for policy development pertaining to state and local government finance, with a focus on infrastructure policy. He worked closely with the White House’s Office of Science and Technology Policy on the organization and launch of MetroLab Network – which is a City + University Collaborative for Urban Innovation. It includes 44 cities, 6 counties and 60 universities.